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My KonMari Journey — Books

My love of reading began at a very young age. My mother found a copy of Roald Dahl’s “The BFG” lying in the road as she was on her way home one day, so she picked it up for me. It’s my earliest memory of being completely immersed in a book, and it launched a lifelong love of Roald Dahl. I still have it, and I still delve into it every few years, just to re-live some of the magic.

The KonMari Method books -- The BFG
Believe it or not, this was the condition it was in when I got it. I’m pretty anal precious about my books, and try to keep them as pristine as possible.

I’ve always been a bit of a bookworm, and loved my weekly trips to the library as a kid. Then my mother started working there, which facilitated my fascination. Any books not on the shelves could, usually, be ordered in. And she still does it for me, bless her.

And that’s why, despite being a massive nerd, my book collection is actually quite small. Most of what I read is borrowed and returned (including “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying”, as it happens). In fact, when it came time to using the KonMari Method on this category, I ended up including magazines and catalogues just to bulk it out a bit. But even with those, I only had 66 items.

The KonMari Method -- Books. Decluttering.

It was a very quick and relatively painless process for me. I got rid of all the catalogues immediately. I don’t need any encouragement to spend more money, thank you very much. The magazines were slightly trickier because I’d spent a lot of money on them. They were ones that I’d ordered from the States so, by the time shipping was factored in, I’d shelled out a fair whack for them. But I’d never opened a single one. In fact, the most recent ones were still in their plastic wrapping. I threw them into the recycling and unsubscribed from the emails alerting me to new issues. ‘Cause I like to see things through to the bitter end like that.

As for the books, some of them were work-related. I got rid of the vast majority of those because the information is pretty easily available online these days, and a lot of them were outdated anyway. I also had old college books and, though I loved the subjects, it’s probably unlikely that I’m going to delve back into them after all these years. (Over a decade! Gulp!) I kept one or two that are special to me (one is no longer in print), and sent the rest packing.

The KonMari Method -- Books. Decluttering.
These are going
The KonMari Method -- Books. Decluttering.
These are staying

Afterwards, I was left with a measly 31 books (2 of which are work-related). Looking back, I maybe should have included eBooks too. I have a few in iBooks and the Kindle app, so they’ll be part of a future category. But, for now, I’m more concerned about the physical clutter.

Here’s a handy video where I talk a little more about the process, and give some recommendations if you’re about to do it yourself. (If it seems a little odd, it’s because it was the second recording. I had to delete the first after it set a record for the most “umms” per minute. Watch this purely for the embarrassing moments where I was about to say “umm” and had to stop myself and then sat there like a sack, struggling for words and staring into the distance.)

All in all, an easy category that was a nice brisk walk compared to the marathon of the first category. But next up is papers and it won’t be pleasant!

What’s your book collection like? Are you a library lover like me?

{ P.S. I share a lot of my progress pics on Instagram so, if you’re interested in following along, I’m at ‘HowToGYST’. }


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8 Responses

    1. Then work by genre. Or, if that doesn’t seem possible either, just take out 10 books at a time, work your way through them, put them back, and take out the next 10. Hope that helps!

    1. Yes, I put mine in with the regular recycling. Check with your local authority or garbage disposal company to see if that’s OK in your area too. =)

  1. As a writer I have a deep love/passion for books. I was able to get rid of a number of books mostly self-help books that had served their purpose, books I had been gifted that never appealed to me in the first place, old textbooks, and books that were all about the plot twists/surprise element. My husband and daughter both questioned me a lot during this category. Are you sure you want to get rid of these books? What about the library you want to create? They were legit worried about my mental health! They kept reassuring me I didn’t need to part with them if I didn’t want. The thing is I have now made a sizable list of books I want in my future library, books that are truly special to me that I will now have space to place. Some of these books I have read in the past but never had a physical copy of and a few are books I have not read from favorite authors. Sometimes when I need inspiration I will take one of my favorite books from the bookcase and just hold it, I don’t have to open it even it is the one category where I really can feel the vibes. Right now my books occupy 2 tall, narrow bookcases. I haven’t counted but I don’t think it is so many because I have had to part with books in the past when moving overseas. My daughter was pretty good about this category as well. Hubbie does not own many books and what he owns is all computer science and math books with impossible titles, reference stuff and work related books. Some woodworking and cookbooks as well. Suffice to say books bring me joy just seeing them and touching them, being near them and so I don’t mind the work that goes into owning them.

    1. That’s wonderful! And the bonus is that now you know what that “feeling” is, it’ll be easier to classify other items. And how lovely to make space for the books that are truly special for you. Now they can stand out even more. =)

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